Hundreds dead or injured in Ghezel Hesar prison clashes, phones cut off
According to the HRANA group, at least 150 prisoners are dead or injured after bloody clashes erupted in Karaj’s Ghezel Hesar prison on the night of March 15th. Thousands of prisoners from units 2 and 3 launched a protest after hearing the news of plans to execute ten inmates.
During the protest approximately 3,000 prisoners attempted to break the doors of their cells while chanting, “Executions must stop.” Security forces attacked the prison cells, resulting in bloody clashes and the transfer of some prisoners from their cells. Reports indicate that prison guards used live ammunitions to control the protesters. Consequently, nearly eighty prisoners were seriously injured or killed, but the number of those shot is at 150 or higher. A handful of officers along with the deputy warden of the prison, Mr. Safakhil suffered leg injuries during the clashes. The prisoners who protested are either serving a heavy sentence or facing imminent execution.
The Committee for the Defense of Political Prisoners reported on March 16th that some people attacked the prison from the outside in an attempt to free some of the detainees. According to these reports, some prisoners escaped. The news of the escapes has not been confirmed by other sources.
1) Amnesty International: Deaths in Iranian Prison Must Be Investigated (March 17, 2011)
2) Take action on behalf of Iranian political prisoners: AI: Norouz Action